COVID-19 baby boom expected to start in January

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New York City is about to experience a baby “bump” — as pandemic pregnancies are on the rise and more women are seeking fertility treatments, doctors told The Post.

“It’s a boom time here,” said Dr. David Keefe, an NYU Langone Health fertility specialist. “I think for many people this pandemic has sort of forced a reconciliation of what really matters.”

At Northwell Health, the state’s biggest hospital network, birth rates are expected to begin to increase in January by 2 or 3 percent, said Dr. Michael Nimaroff, senior vice president of OB-GYN Services.

In a typical year, they see 30,000 births but in 2021 they’re expecting about 750 more. Nimaroff said the network’s 40 obstetrical practices, located in New York City, Westchester and Long Island, began seeing an increase in patients around May. Fertility specialists are also treating more women.

Nationwide, births hit the lowest level in more than 30 years in 2019, after declining for five years. The number of births in 2019 fell around 1 percent from 2018, to about 3.7 million.

“Even a small increase … that’s a positive,” Nimaroff added.

On the early side of the boomlet were Post staffers Jessica Hober, a photo editor, and her photographer husband Matt McDermott. The Astoria couple welcomed daughter Billie Jeanne on Nov. 28.

Already parents to a son, Dean, now 3, they had casually been thinking about having another child when the pandemic lockdown helped things along.

“We think [conception] happened sometime right after the shutdown — interesting timing,” McDermott said with a laugh. “Hey you know, when the outside world shuts down, what do you expect when you’re home alone a lot with your wife? It’s what happens naturally.”

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